The Fear of Failure

failure11Check out this post on failure…

I am constantly afraid of failing.  I don’t mean that I am afraid to the point of petrification.  Fear is a motivator, an adrenaline jump start.  Fear keeps us looking for the solution.

This is an obvious post, but why do we constantly have to talk about hesitation due to fear?  Fear is natural and we innately want to avoid it.  I find myself guilty of it and I’m sure you all have fallen victim to fear’s clutches as well.  But how do you turn fear into a motivator if that is not something you are used to doing?

1. Get a support group.  Have a close group of people that you can confide in when you are fearful and make sure that they are motivators.  Sometimes all you need is that person to say, “You can do this.”

2. Make a habit of winning.  We are creatures of habit, there is no doubt about it.  Once you make a habit of something it is hard to break.  So do the same with overcoming your fear.  Make simple choices and break up the task into little obstacles that can easily become wins.  Once you start winning, you will continue to push yourself to do so.

3. Stop and think.  Most times we look at something that frightens us, like the unknown, and we make it bigger than what it really is.  Think back to when you were afraid of the shadows when you were a kid.  When you stopped to convince yourself that it was just a jacket on the back of the chair, you were confident enough to get out from under the covers.  Analyze your fear and you will find that you can create a plan to overcome it.

4. What is the worst-case scenario if you do fail?  Usually, it is not as bad as you originally thought.  Typically it can be offset with a few precautions.  Understanding the risk makes it seem less risky.

5. Get some perspective.  How much does it really matter if you don’t succeed?  Nine times out of ten it will not matter much at all (except to you) and when it does matter, the effects are not as far reaching as you first thought.  Not everyone is looking at you and waiting for you to fail, you just think they are.

Just remember that failure can become a motivator, just as much as success.  Look back at your worst failures and you just might realize they weren’t that bad to begin with.  Besides, most of the biggest success stories have a lot of failure in front of them that you just don’t read about.

How else can you get over your fear of failing?